Cancer Moonshot: A story of hope for oncology in the US

Cancer Moonshot: A story of hope for oncology in the US

The vision of ending cancer as we know it has long been a target for governments and politicians across the aisle. And there is a good reason why this particular disease unites competitors like few other public health initiatives. Cancer does not discriminate in who it impacts. Be it as a patient or supporting a loved one, the experience of cancer touches virtually everyone in one way or another.

As the second-leading cause of death in the US, it should come as no surprise that cancer has become a key talking point for many a political campaign debate, from President Richard Nixon’s ‘War on Cancer’ in the 1970s to President Bill Clinton’s championing of breast cancer efforts.

But in 2016, President Barack Obama sparked a new approach to accelerate cancer research and improve patient outcomes, promoting collaboration and uniting public and private organisations to pursue a noble goal.

This is the story of the Beau-Biden Cancer Moonshot.


The cancer fight takes flight

Echoing President John F. Kennedy’s 1961 call for the nation to “commit itself to achieving the goal, before this decade is out, of landing a man on the moon and returning him safely to the Earth”, in January of 2016, then-US President Barack Obama announced an equally ambitious scientific goal during his final State of the Union address – to make a decade’s worth of advances in cancer prevention, diagnosis, and treatment, in five years.


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